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What Is Link Cloaking - And Why Should I Care?

Dec 21, 2007
During a teleseminar about link cloaking and ad tracking, Cloak and Tracker creator Jay Jennings was asked the following question:

"I'm trying to build my internet marketing business and I'd like to know what cloaking and tracking is used for? How difficult is it to implement?"

Cloaking and tracking are two different things, but there are some software applications out there which can do both, so I usually lump the two together. But let's look at each one separately, first:

Cloaking: This is used mainly by people who are promoting products as an affiliate. As you know, to earn a commission by selling an affiliate product, the person who buys must click through using your affiliate link. The problem with that, is there are some people who, for one reason or another, don't want you to get a commission. And so when they see an affiliate link, they will either strip your affiliate ID from the link, or even worse, replace your affiliate ID with theirs' -- so when they click through and buy, you don't make a commission.

One solution that's proven to increase the amount of commissions you make, is to cloak your link -- basically, you make the link look like a "normal" link and not like an affiliate link. The person sees a link that looks very innocent, and when they click it they are automatically redirected using your affiliate link. So the link looks normal, but behind the scenes it switches out for your affiliate ID.

Tracking: Okay, so you can make an affiliate link look like a normal link, but what about tracking? In general, the more details you know about your online business, the better off you are. For example, if you buy pay-per-click advertising, and you also write articles to generate traffic, how will you know which one is a better use of your time and money if you don't track the results?

Or, let's say you spend time in several online forums participating and answering questions and use the sig line in your message to drive traffic to your site. If one forum sent you 10 times as much traffic as another one, wouldn't you want to know that? If you don't know which one is better, you run the risk of sending time doing something that doesn't give you the best return on your investment -- whether your investment is time or money.

The nice thing about some cloaking software is that the same thing that cloaks your links can also be used to track the clicks on your links -- make sure you find software that will do both.

Cloaking and tracking can mean more profits for your online business, but how difficult is it to implement?

There are some ways of cloaking where being a "tech-head" is really handy, but most methods don't require any specialized knowledge. You should be comfortable signing up for someone's affiliate program, copy and pasting your affiliate links, and stuff like that. You'll also need to know the username and password to your web site so your software can upload the files, but that's all information you have to know anyway, just to put up your web pages.

Cloaking your links is easy and can mean more profit in your pocket -- so anyone doing business on the internet owes it to themselves to find out exactly how to implement it in their business.
About the Author
Jay Jennings is the creator of one of the most powerful (and easy-to-use) cloaking and tracking programs available, Cloak and Tracker. For a free, 15-minute online video showing how you can easily cloak your links, see http://LinkCloakingExplained.com and watch the video right now.
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